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I am a Realtor and must depend on the advice from competent service vendors often in my business. Duane Elliott with Lighthouse Electrical & Maintenance has come to my rescue many times in the last several years. Duane has been accessible, precise and fair in his dealings with me and with my clients. I have used Duane's services at my personal home and have been very pleased with the work done.

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Linda Lane Realty, LLC

Aluminum Wiring

According to U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), aluminum wire is more than 50 times more likely to have one or more connections reach electrical "Fire Hazard Conditions" than a home wired with copper.

Aluminum wiring was used in new construction, additions and remodels in the Vietnam war era (1965-1973) due to the high use of copper by the military during the war. Electrical contractors were relegated to use aluminum wire because of the high price copper commanded. Aluminum is softer than copper and reacts (expands and contracts) to fluctuations in temperatures. Because aluminum is more reactive than copper, there is a higher probability the electrical connections made in your home will become loose. When connections are loose, they create an electrical safety and fire hazard.

What Homes are Affected?

Homes built before 1965 are unlikely to have aluminum branch circuit wiring. Homes built, rooms added, and circuits rewired or added between 1965-1973 and some post-1973 houses may contain aluminum wiring.

It is important to note that aluminum wiring is still permitted and used for certain applications, including residential service entrance wiring (the wiring that enters your electrical panel) and single-purpose higher amperage circuits such as 240V air conditioning or electric range circuits. The electrical fire hazard lies in the branch circuits that go from your electrical panel to each room and other areas in your home.

What Can Be Done to Fix the Problem?

  1. Remove all aluminum wiring and rewire branch circuits in the home with copper wire.
  2. An alternate method is referred to as "pig-tailing" This method is less costly than the previous listed method. It is highly recommended this task be performed by an experienced and licensed electrician because if done improperly, "pig-tailing" may pose a greater fire hazard than what originally existed.

Call (336) 407-8121 or email Lighthouse Electrical, Inc. to learn more about identifying aluminum wiring in your home and how it can be repaired.
















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